Sinnott appointed head of materials science and engineering

July 14, 2015

Susan Sinnott, alumni professor in materials science and director of the Cyberinfrastructure for Atomistic Simulation at the University of Florida, has been named head of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at Penn State, effective Aug. 1. Sinnott will take over departmental duties from Gary Messing, distinguished professor of ceramics, who has been department head since 2001.

“Susan was chosen from an exceptionally strong field of finalists for the position. She is an outstanding researcher and someone who cares deeply for the development of students with whom she works. We’re excited that she is joining the college,” says William Easterling, dean of the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences.

“Susan is a prolific researcher, and is renowned for her work involving computational materials and leadership in the materials profession. We’re looking forward to her leading the department as we move back into the renovated Steidle Building in 2016,” said Messing.

With a focus on modeling techniques, Sinnott’s research aims to discover or improve materials. She has investigated chemical processes at surfaces, atomic-scale modeling techniques, nanostructures and defects in functional ceramics, and her research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the Department of Energy and the Office of Naval Research. She has published more than 200 peer-reviewed journal articles and is the editor-in-chief for Computational Materials Science, an associate editor for Journal of the American Ceramic Society and a principal editor for Journal of Materials Research.

Sinnott is a fellow of the American Physical Society, the Materials Research Society, the American Ceramic Society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Vacuum Society (AVS), and is a past president of AVS.

Sinnott received a bachelor in science with honors in chemistry from the University of Texas at Austin and a doctorate in physical chemistry from Iowa State University.  

  • Susan Sinnott

    Susan Sinnott has been named head of Penn State's Department of Materials Science and Engineering, effective August 1, 2015. 

    IMAGE: Andrea Kohler

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated May 03, 2018